The Day The World Almost Imploded

The Desolate Garden was a work of fiction, or was it?

In 1983, President Ronald Reagan ordered the commencement of a NATO exercise named Able Archer ’83. Nothing unusual in that as each year NATO stretches its muscles with shows of strength.

1983 differed considerably. Prior to the exercise, a cordon of submarine beacons had been laid in the North Sea from Newfoundland to Iceland and from Scotland to Norway. US Naval task forces had increased in the Pacific and all of the UK and French nuclear missile carrying submarines had put to sea.

NATO aircrafts were flying to the limit of USSR radar installations, marking them then turning back at the last minute before entering Russian airspace. None of this was reported in the civilian press. As a precursor to a First Strike scenario the Politburo knew that radio traffic between the US and the UK would escalate; this it did and using a code not previously used, which was indecipherable to the Soviets.

Unlike the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, the last time the world was on the brink of war, now it was the Russians being threatened not the West. To make matters worse for the USSR their early warning missile satellite, code name OKA had malfunctioned and was decommissioned awaiting repair. NATO’s readiness had been moved up to its most critical; DEFCON ONE, so when on the night of the 26th September a single ICBM leaving a silo in Nebraska was sighted by ground radar commanded by Lieutenant Colonel Stanislav Petrov he could have well pressed the button alerting his senior officers up the chain. But he did not. Nor did he panic when half an hour or so later three more ICBM’s were detected leaving the USA.

Within 16 hours Able Archer ’83 had run its course and Russian troops, air bases, naval forces and nuclear weapon ground control units were stood down. This was the closest the world came to imploding and it was saved by this man Stanislav Petrov who died last May aged 77.

Apart from the names all this, and more was told in The Desolate Garden.

May I introduce Stanislav Petrov:


About Daniel Kemp

Daniel Kemp is a member of The Society of Authors. His introduction to the world of espionage and mystery happened at an early age when his father was employed by the War Office in Whitehall, London, at the end of WWII. However, it wasn’t until after his father died that he showed any interest in anything other than himself! On leaving academia he took on many roles in his working life: a London police officer, mini-cab business owner, pub tenant and licensed London taxi driver, but never did he plan to become a writer. Nevertheless, after a road traffic accident left him suffering from PTSD and effectively—out of paid work for four years, he wrote and self-published his first novel —The Desolate Garden. Within three months of publication, that book was under a paid option to become a $30 million film. The option lasted for five years until distribution became an insurmountable problem for the production company. All ten of his novels are now published by CNext Chapter with the tenth novel being a two-part ending to the Heirs and Descendants Series. A Covenant of Spies completed the four-book series alongside: What Happened In Vienna, Jack? Once I Was A Soldier and A Widow's Son. Under the Creativia publishing banner, The Desolate Garden went on to become a bestselling novel in World and Russian Literature in 2017. The following year, in May 2018, his book What Happened In Vienna, Jack? was a number-one bestseller on four separate Amazon sites: America, the UK, Canada, and Australia. Although it's true to say that he mainly concentrates on what he knows most about; murders laced by the mystery involving spies, his diverse experience of life shows in the two novellas he wrote, namely: Why? A Complicated Love, and the intriguing story titled--The Story That Had No Beginning. He is the recipient of rave reviews from a prestigious Manhattan publication and described as—the new Graham Green—by a highly placed employee of Waterstones Books, for whom he did a countrywide tour of book signing events. He has also appeared on 'live' television in the UK publicising his first novel. There is no morality to be found in evil. But to recognise that which is truly evil one must forget the rules of morality. Amazon Author Page He is fond of writing Quotes and a collection of his can be found here---
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4 Responses to The Day The World Almost Imploded

  1. Onisha Ellis says:

    Fascinating story, Danny.

  2. Daniel Kemp says:

    Isn’t it just, Onisha. How the world was saved by a single man!

  3. I remember hearing about this on TV recently. It makes a person wonder if there were othery close calls we’ve had we didn’t know about. Thanks for stopping by my blog and following. 🙂 — Suzanne

  4. Daniel Kemp says:

    My pleasure, Suzanne.

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